Annual Summer Study Abroad Program Pivots Online

For many summers, USC Mann has drawn undergraduate pharmacy students from around the world to the USC Health Sciences Campus for residential educational opportunities. With travel restrictions caused by the pandemic, this year’s program was completely reimagined under the leadership of faculty members Ian Haworth, Rory Kim and Rebecca Romero.

The resulting two-week, online program—Virtual Immersion in Clinical Pharmacy and Therapeutics— brought together 19 students from South Korea, Taiwan and Saudi Arabia in July. While it wasn’t the same as traveling to the U.S., student participants said they enjoyed their time virtually visiting the school and meeting new colleagues from around the globe, while taking a deep dive into drugs that treat diabetes.

“This learning experience made me feel as if I’ve been to different countries all at once and I’ve made great connections with every one of them,” says Alyaa Al-rifai from King Abdulaziz University in Jedda, Saudi Arabia.

“People were friendly and worked very hard,” says Yu-Chen Lin of Chia Nan University in Taiwan. “I am more confident to speak out loud and do more study abroad.”